The Tory Manifesto Is Priceless 112


The most extraordinary thing about the Tory manifesto is that you can read pages and pages of it and not come upon a monetary value put on anything. Figures are extremely few and far between indeed, and where there is a cost placed on something there is normally no indication given at all of where the money is coming from.

You have to get to page 14 before you come across a single figure at all. Then it tells you that by 2020 they will increase the personal tax allowance to £12,500 and increase the higher rate threshold to £50,000. But it places no value at all on the next cost of this tax cut, or how it can be afforded.

You have to go through six more pages of waffle before you get the next figure at page 20, a National Productivity Fund of £23 billion. Again, no indication is given of the source of this funding, perhaps because it is very much an old recycled announcement.

Perhaps the most remarkable instance of lack of clarity on funding is the promise of £8 billion extra for the NHS. Again no indication at all is given of where this money is coming from. The only indication of an extra funding source is a levy of £450 per head on overseas students for use of the NHS. That will raise only about £50 million and is just a chance for an attack on a group May particularly hates – and a bone to the racists.

It is impossible not to contrast the complete absence of prices on 95% of the proposals in the manifesto, and the complete lack of explanation of the source of funds on almost all the few items that are costed, with the huge media onslaught on the fiscal detail of the opposition parties’ manifestoes. A completely different standard is being applied to the Tories.

The BBC as usual wheeled out the Institute of Fiscal Studies, the “independent” body representing extreme neo-liberalism. The IFS has been lyrical for hours these last few days giving instant judgements on why the Labour manifesto had holes in it, repeating continually the corporate propaganda that if you increase taxes on the super-rich, they will pay less. But when invited by the BBC to comment on the finances of the Tory manifesto, the IFS merely replied that they would be presenting an analysis of all the manifestoes next Tuesday.

The Tory manifesto is literally priceless – it puts no price on anything. But we all know it will carry a disastrous cost for our public services and for the most vulnerable in our society,

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112 thoughts on “The Tory Manifesto Is Priceless

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  • Sharp Ears

    I did not know that there was this debate on ITV now until 10pm

    Leaders’ debate on ITV under way
    UKIP, Lib Dem, Green Party, SNP and Plaid Cymru leaders take part but Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn choose not to

  • FranzB

    “The BBC as usual wheeled out the Institute of Fiscal Studies, the “independent” body representing extreme neo-liberalism. ”

    I heard Kamal Ahmed (BBC economics editor) comment on the lack of costings in the Tory manifesto on BBC Radio 4’s 6 p.m. news. He said this “gives the Tories room for manoeuvre in a changing world”, i.e. what a brilliant tactic. Needless to say, if Corbyn / McDonnell had done the same it would have been an indicator of how hopeless they were.

    It occurred to me that maybe there are no costings because Hammond has fallen out with May over the contents of their manifesto.

    • D_Majestic

      You final line is contains a very good point, FranzB. I have to say I had not even thought of that. It does seem most strange, considering the very large amount of Tory criticism of Labour’s spending plans.

  • RobG

    This is terrifying stuff…

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/may/18/secret-plans-protect-le-pen-french-republic-emerge

    They are basically saying that they (whom are totally unelected) know better than the electorate.

    This is exactly what Craig says, when he tells us that Le Pen is a ‘fascist’ and we can’t even mention her.

    The real fascist is Macron, a Rothschild banker, a person who’s been voted president of France at the age of 39 and has never held an elected office before. It’s so ridiculous it’s beyond belief.

    Craig might ban me for saying these things.

    But you see, you can only bullshit the people for so long.

    • glenn_uk

      Come on Rob, that’s a bit of a fib.

      The ban applied for CAMPAIGNING for Le Pen, not mentioning her. That was clarified numerous times, see the relevant post for as many examples as required.

      • RobG

        Glenn, anyone familiar with me on this board will know that I’m firmly on the left of politics (and anyone who wants to read my blog posts will see likewise, going back years).

        I was labelled a fascist by Craig for supporting Le Pen over Macron in the final round of the French presidential election.

        Macron is by far the biggest fascist, if you take Mussolini’s famous definition of it: the marriage of government and corporations.

        Likewise, the USA and UK are now fascist states, in which the rule of law is dodgy, to say the least.

        We certainly live in completely mad times.

        One can only hope that good will triumph over evil.

        • craig Post author

          RobG you can go off now and be a “left wing” Nazi supporter on your own blog. You could not have been more comprehensively warned, and you persist in your support of LePen/

    • bevin

      For example, according to the WSWS:
      “Macron announced that Patrice Strzoda, the former chief of staff of PS Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve, would be his own chief of staff.
      “Strzoda organised the brutal police repression of protests against Hollande, including the systematic and deadly use of “flash-ball” rubber bullets. As prefect in Brittany from 2013 to 2016, he oversaw the police operations and the use of assault grenades that in 2014 cost the life of ecological protester Rémi Fraisse. His nomination is a sign that Macron and Philippe will stop at nothing to repress the explosive opposition that their policies will provoke.
      “Jean-Yves Le Drian (PS) is France’s new minister of foreign affairs. As defence minister under Hollande, he played a critical role in French imperialism’s aggressive policy in Syria and Africa, and against Russia as part of the NATO alliance. He also supervised the deployment of the army on French soil in the context of the prolonged state of emergency, which suspends basic democratic rights.
      According to press reports, Le Drian worked closely with Hollande to identify and approve targets of the PS’s “homicide operations.” These extra-judicial murders, “targeted assassinations,” including of citizens, were carried out by the French state abroad in flagrant violation of the French constitution, which forbids the death penalty. His chief role in a new government will be to carry out the reorganisation and remilitarisation of European foreign policy, carried out in close collaboration with Berlin.
      “Gérard Collomb, the PS mayor of Lyon, is now interior minister. He is a founding member of the PS. According to Luc Rosenzweig, a former journalist at Le Monde and Libération, Lyon under Collomb—due to the close collaboration between the PS and business circles—was “a laboratory of Macronism even before Macron tried to play in the big leagues of the political arena.” After the November 13, 2015, attacks in Paris, Collomb decreed the arming of Lyon’s municipal police.
      “Another pillar of the political establishment, right-wing politician François Bayrou of the Democratic Movement (MoDem), is now justice minister. Bayrou has regularly been a minister of reactionary governments since the 1980s. A practising Catholic, he tried as education minister to introduce a law that would allow stepped-up financing of private schools. In 1994, nearly a million protesters marched to oppose this plan….”

      The rapidity with which Macron has moved to bring the Sarkozy programme, which Hollande continued to fruition is surprising. He is evidently in a great hurry. As for ‘fascism’, my French is not very good but to my untutored ear “La Republique en Marche!” sounds very much like “Action Francaise!”

      • paul

        This is the progression of the vivisection of greece, they have have triumphed through fear and ruthless intimidation.
        La France will be a peacock feather for their hat.

      • RobG

        bevin, I’m too tired right now to address everything you said in your post. What I will say is that the first round of the French presidential election in April was the closest one in modern history. There were not much more than four percentage points between the top four candidates. Most notably the two main political parties – Party Socialist and the Les Republicans – didn’t get a candidate through to the final round. This has never happened before in post-war France.

        What’s going to happen next? With a total stoodge like Macron as President I’m afraid that there will probably be a revolution.

        Much like what is going to happen in America.

      • craig Post author

        Bevin all the signs are that Macron is going to be even more enthusiastic a deregulator than expected. Fortunately there are very strong forces of resistance in French society.

      • bevin

        Fascism, as a variant of nationalism, differs greatly according to local circumstances, time and place. Its classic features are generally connected with its origins at a time when capitalism is under pressure and property sees itself as endangered. Apart from that-its role as a striking force against socialist and trade union pressures- it is chameleon like. Here it is militaristic, there it is pietistic; here it is aggressively nationalistic, there it is proud to be part of an international trend. It is opportunistic because it really has only one purpose which is to fight the class war.
        Totalitarianism is a red herring- control over dissent, the ability to read public opinion and to lead it no longer require uniformed thug militias, just the regular surveillance facilities which we all live under. In the Panopticon only one observer/guard is needed. The knowledge he accumulates is enough to allow ‘crime’ to be predicted, anticipated and nipped in the bud. And under fascism the only crimes that bother authority are thought crimes.
        The Trump phenomenon is emblematic of the nature of the fascist threat: while everyone is being entertained by caricatures of Drumpf the Arturo Ui of our time, the real threat comes from the deadly serious Deep State, the Civil Service, the Intelligence Services and their minions in the media which, in real time, is erasing the Constitution in the name of the Constitution, the law in the name of legality.

  • fwl

    Many labour under the misapprehension that manifestos are impenetrable black letter documents, but they are just waffle.

    If the government considers it has a good idea why has it not already implemented it? Why keep it for the manifesto unless it is simply in the spiv business of conning us.

    If I have time I may extract some of this waffle or do yourself. It’s almost amusing.

  • Max

    I know it is a cliche, but it is still worth repeating, that democracy is just so far away from Britain that it can no longer even pretend to approximate it.

    Those who know anything about what is going on – sadly very few today since the majority have been reduced to slaves of one stripe or another, operating out of day-to-day need and completely subject to emotional manipulation, too busy to dig deeper than BBC – have been so pathetically reduced to ‘strategic voting’, that they won’t even bother to reflect on what the latter means anymore, so desperate are they to get rid of the Tories.

    That zombie majority, on the other hand, will vote in June for more austerity and hardship, more global hostilities, more unrest and terrorism, the ruination of the economy, more xenophobia and racism, the dismantling of the healthcare system, an even wider gap between the rich and pour, higher tuition, pouring billions of pounds into weapons of mass destruction (the build-up of which we supposedly fought against when invading Iraq), etc..

    It is really hard not to have anything but a real Swiftian contempt for humanity when one sees the way ‘the people’ vote.

  • leonard MORRIS

    Excellent summary of the manifestos. One standard for the opposition parties and another for the Tories. The Main Stream Media is a disgrace only doing the bidding of their billionaire owners who are based in tax havens and pay no tax in Britain.
    What about the BBC you might say. They work for and are paid by us the licence payers. Unfortunately the BBC has become the government’s propaganda arm only concerned with the next round of it’s levy to be imposed on us viewers.

  • John

    Britain has never been a democracy, but maintained a relatively plausible façade of being one. Even this has now been abandoned. The robber barons are in power and do not make any attempt to conceal their thievery.

    How long do we have to suffer this before someone with cojones big enough stands up to the Tories and says, ‘Either you stop your corruption, or we will stop you’?

  • TFS

    1. I thought BoJo joined the ranks of the Brexiteers to scupper their chances. I’m, it would appear, the only one who holds this view.

    2. I see the same from TMay. The manifesto speaks to me like she want’s to lose. Lose the election and let JC deal with/or not Brexit. Its a poisoned challace and JC will be stabbed to death by the PLP.

    FIX IS IN, THEY WANT TO LOSE, TO TAKE A HIT FOR THE TEAM

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